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Art, Law and Business

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Fees: $57,143.00


Program Outline
The M.A. in Art, Law and Business provides rigorous training for its students combining in-depth academic coursework alongside hands-on practical training and workshops.  The curriculum is designed specifically for those interested in developing or furthering a career in the business of art.  Emphasizing practice over theory, the program introduces students to the foundational tools, skills and concepts of art, law and business that are crucial prerequisites for anyone wishing to work in the current global art marketplace.

The core pedagogical strategy of the Christie’s Education Art, Law and Business Program is based on the premise that utilizing the lens of commerce and law to view art and the art market will serve to enhance our understanding of how the global art market functions.  Through this non-traditional approach to the study and examination of art and art markets, students will develop uncommon insight into the dynamics that influence the markets.  

Our program goal is the training of students across the three disciplines of art, law and business resulting in graduates who are equally conversant in art and in commerce and who, therefore, will have the necessary transferable skills to make a smooth professional transition into the global art world.  With unparalleled access art market professionals working at Christie’s, students will learn from, and interface with, the current leading practitioners of the art market.  As part of the curriculum, students will travel to domestic and international art destinations to meet with professionals working across the art market landscape, including: art fairs, museums, special exhibitions, conferences, galleries and art investment vehicles.

Our Unique Approach
Over 15 months of intensive study, students take a combined 40 credits to complete their degree.  The program concludes with a final term that is exclusively focused on a mandatory internship and an independent capstone project that are each instrumental in helping students to activate their professional careers.

Who should apply?
The program is designed for recent undergraduates as well as existing professionals from other disciplines who wish to gain access to the global art market. Our program is best suited for those aiming to start careers in the management, administration and strategy of commercial entities within the international art world and creative industries.  Graduates typically go onto careers in auction houses, galleries, art fairs and other art related businesses in areas that include business management, business strategy, client services, marketing, public relations and risk management.

Student Learning Results

  • Gain an advanced understanding of the structure and inner workings of the commercial art world
  • Acquire in-depth knowledge of the art auction business
  • Develop transferable professional business skills in finance, accounting, marketing and strategy
  • Build personal art business networks through extensive opportunities to interface with leading art world professionals across the art market landscape
  • Become familiar with current research resources for art law and art business
  • Be prepared for employment in the commercial art world and the creative industries worldwide

Course dates

Orientation Week
September 6 - 9, 2016

Fall Term
September 12 – November 11, 2016

Rosh Hashanah Observed
October 3, 2016

Yom Kippur Observed
October 12, 2016

Fall Term Exam Week
November 14-18, 2016

Winter Term
January 3 – March 10, 2017

MLK Day Observed
January 16, 2017

President’s Day break
February 20-24, 2017

Winter Term Exam Week
March 13-17, 2017

Spring Term
April 3 – June 2, 2017

Passover Observed
April 20, 2017

Memorial Day Observed
May 29, 2017

Spring Term Exam Week
June 5-9, 2017

Study Trip
Dates to be announced

Noah Kupferman
Faculty Member

Noah Kupferman

Program Director, Art, Law and Business

Art Business I, II, III
One of the foundational courses in the Art Law and Business Program, Art Business (I, II and III) is intended to provide students with a basis of qualitative, quantitative and analytical skills necessary to run a business.  The course is designed to provide a general understanding of the commercial and financial markets in general and the art market in detail.  Art Business provides an introduction to the main players and their interaction within the art markets; also introduced are the tools that are necessary to critically assess the markets qualitatively and quantitatively. The Art Business Course investigates the dynamics of the art market(s) within the current international economy.  Topics covered include: economics, finance, accounting, statistics, spreadsheet construction, marketing and strategy.  (3 credits per term / 9 credits total)

Language of Contemporary Art I, II, III
This course surveys the history and development of global contemporary art from the 1960s to the present. Its goal is to provide students the necessary art historical background to understand the principles of formal and stylistic components of contemporary art. The geographic scope will include both established western canon as well as emerging art centers worldwide. The course will progress both thematically and chronologically. The lecture series will introduce students to major artists and movements from Europe, North and South America, Africa, Asia, Australia, and the Middle East. Each week will highlight a theme that examines the recognized artists whose work engages with these issues. It will also include lectures on the watershed exhibitions that define that moment as well as lectures on specific artists. Students will be assessed through mid-term and final exams. (2 credits per term / 6 credits total)

Mapping the Art World
The goal of the course is to familiarize the students with the institutions that have historically played an essential role in shaping the art market (private dealers, galleries, collectors, auction houses, critics, museums). This unit looks at the various players who are central to the global art world. Students will hear from dealers with international galleries, advisors who travel internationally to keep up with art fairs and dealers, curators of international exhibitions and biennials, artists who show works around the world and public relations and marketing firms which will allow students to hear first-hand the issues central to working within a global economy. In addition to the lecture, students will attend field studies once a week in and around New York. The goal of the field studies is to foster connoisseurship skills and to build an understanding of the current art market and of various art world environments. The field studies are a unique opportunity for students to develop the ability to look critically at artworks and to begin making determinations about value, based on specific criteria. This class will conclude with a trip to Miami Basel. (3 credits)

Art Law, I, II, III
The Art Law course investigates the role that law plays in the commercial art world. It explores key legal instruments used in transactions, the roles of national and international legislation in the governance of the art market and the effects these have on the free movement of cultural objects between key international selling centers. These courses will provide the students with a knowledge of a range of areas in international art business including: art law and taxation, appraisal/valuation, intellectual property rights, ethics and corporate social responsibility and use of information and communication technology; knowledge that is essential to become an art world professional. (2 credits per term / 6 credits total)

Digital Strategies
As the world becomes progressively more reliant on smartphones and computers and the like, it is logical that global art businesses are devoting more time and resources to developing cogent online business strategies.  This course investigates how technology can be used as a strategic tool for an art or luxury goods business. The goal is to equip students with the digital tools they need to be effective professionals. The course is practical in nature and will allow the student to explore various technologies from databases to social media to graphic design software. From becoming familiar with online auction strategies to the use of digital tools for exhibition design, this course will allow the students to acquire the necessary business and technological skills that have become crucial for anyone working in an art-related business. (2 credits)

Art Finance: Art as an Asset Class
The volatility of traditional asset classes in recent years has driven the search for greater stability of returns via alternative asset classes. The desire to reap higher risk adjusted returns from diversification into assets that offer low and even negative correlation with equities and bonds is extremely desirable. Investment funds specializing in fine and decorative art investment have emerged that appear to offer a highly beneficial diversification strategy with extremely low correlation with traditional asset classes. It is important for investors to understand the risk and return characteristics of this new alternative asset class.  Learn about this “new asset class” and how it may fit into a client’s portfolio allocation; learn about how some wealth management firms now look at fine art as a new relationship tool to drive business; finally, learn about the underlying asset itself and how “investments of passion” can drive and increase assets under management. (2 credit)

Risk Management and Logistics
The growth of the global art market has been a catalyst for an entire niche economy that has evolved to support this growth.  One major business development over the years has been in the area of risk management and logistics for the art market.  Risk management often refers to art insurance and deals with ways of preventing and/or minimizing loss – but, risk management and logistics has grown to include much more, including: Project Management, Collection Management, Storage, Transportation, Installation, Exhibition Services and Care Consultation. Through a series of lectures, readings, and discussions with guest lecture practitioners students will learn in detail about this growing area of the art world. (1 credit)

Arts Management for Non Profit Organizations
The Arts Management Course is designed to provide a general understanding of the main non-commercial art institutions, such as museums, private foundations and corporate collections, and their interaction with the art markets. This course is designed to provide and develop an understanding of methodologies for analyzing the impact of art institutions and services on the wider economy and art market. (2 credits)

Collection Management
Issues explored include accessioning procedures, cataloging systems and information management, collections storage and handling, development of collections policies and legal and ethical foundations for gifts and loan agreements. Traditionally, these have been the responsibilities of the registrar or collections manager in a museum setting but with growth of private collections and galleries throughout the world the applicability of these skills has grown considerably and have become crucial to the running of an effective global art business.  (2 credits)

Appraisals and Valuations
Different types of professions and their specific needs for determining the value of art are examined. The impacts of emerging markets and technologies on the business of art are also covered. (2 credits)

Capstone Project
This is the culminating independent project that allows students to develop their voice through researching and writing on a topic of their own selection. The project can take a variety of forms. The subject could be a body of work analyzing a sector of the market, a business plan, a study on the impact of a specific area of law or regulation, or another piece of commercial analytical work. (3 credits)

Master’s students pursue full-time internships for 45 days in September, October and November after the completion of their coursework. Students secure internships in a wide range of sites including Christie’s auction house, commercial galleries, not for profit art institutions and elsewhere. (2 credits)

Study Trip
All M.A. students participate in study trips to a major international art fair or other art event. Students will interact with the art and network with professionals while applying their newly acquired skills in a real-world setting.

Professional Development
Christie's Education offers a series of professional development workshops open to all M.A. students. A combination of Christie’s Professors, art world professionals and Christie’s Human Resources practitioners work closely with our students to enhance their skills in critical career related areas, including: resume and cover letter writing, presentation skills, networking, interviewing, negotiation, and public speaking. These workshops are intended to offer practical skills to complement the training received through coursework, ensuring that all graduates are well prepared for the current job market.


Admission Requirements

NOTES: International students enrolled in this program are eligible for F1 Student Visas. Details on how to apply for a visa are included in your admissions packet after being accepted into the program. Students enrolled in the Master of Arts in Art, Law and Business are eligible for federal financial aid, for details email

All admissions materials, including recommendation letters, must be submitted in hard copy to Christie's Education Admissions, 1230 Avenue of the Americas, 20th Floor, New York, NY 10020.

  • Completed admission application form
  • Non-refundable application fee of $95
  • Bachelor’s degree or the equivalent international degree
  • Official transcripts in sealed envelopes from all post-secondary institutions attended. All transcripts, diplomas or academic records must be official documents issued by the college or university and provided in the original language. Transcripts in other languages must be accompanied by English translations certified by official translation professionals or agencies
  • All international transcripts must be accompanied by an equivalency report from World Education Services,
  • Essay statement, 2–3 pages on why you are interested in the program
  • Sample of writing, no more than 10 pages, which can be taken from undergraduate work
  • Official GRE score report (optional)
  • Official TOEFL scores report if applicable
  • Three letters of academic or professional recommendation from writers who know the applicant’s abilities well. Letters should be sent in hard copy on letter head with original signatures
  • Personal interview (by invitation only). Invitations will be sent once all application materials have been submitted
Students will:
  • Gain an advanced understanding of the commercial art world
  • Learn about the structure of the art world and the interplay between the commercial and non-profit sectors
  • Gain art market knowledge
  • Acquire knowledge of the auction house
  • Develop transferable professional skill such as writing market analysis reports, a collecting management proposal, and a marketing plan to sell an art work
  • Have networking opportunities with art world professionals
  • Become familiar with current research resources for art law and art business
  • Be prepared for employment in the commercial art world and the creative industries worldwide

Karen Maguire
Learning Resources Manager

Christie’s Education students, both current and alumni, have access to the on-site Learning Resources Center (LRC).

The Christie’s Education Library consists of approximately 6,000 books and exhibition catalogues, sale catalogues, journals, e-resources and DVDs. Our library is an excellent resource that we are pleased to be able to offer to our students. The librarian is available to assist with reference queries during the open hours of the library.

Students at Christie’s Education have access to a broad range of electronic resources. Through our affiliation with the auction house we have privileged access to Christie’s in-house sales database Lotfinder and to resources such as Art Sales Index, Artfact, AskArt, SCIPIO, Print Council of America, Who's Who in American Art, JSTOR, Artists Signatures, Burlington Magazine Index, Getty Research Portal, Worldcat, Arcade, Archives of American Art, Artnet, Oxford Art Online and EBSCO Articles.

IT Facilities
Desktop PCs, WiFi access and Canon Multi-functional devices with color printing and scan to USB available, as well as specialist design software.

Writing Center
Christie's Education New York offers a Writing Center as a resource for students to support their development as writers. The Writing Center is open to all students and we encourage everyone to utilize it. Students with an art history background as well as those coming into our programs from other professional or academic fields benefit from the expertise of an in-house writing teacher.  Group sessions address the mechanics of essay writing and conventions used in art history. Individual sessions are to available to students who wish to have support on specific assignments. 

Additional Resources
Christie’s Education students have orientations to the resources available at New York art libraries such as the Thomas Watson Library at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Frick Art Reference Library, the New York Public Library and the libraries of the Museum of Modern Art.

Professional Development
Christie’s Education New York focuses on professional development in a number of ways. The Art Business & Professional Practices course, open to students in the Master of Arts in Modern Art and Its Markets or in the Certificate in Modern and Contemporary Art, consists of lectures, discussion sessions, and assignments designed to develop professional skills that are necessary to succeed in the art world. Students meet a wide range of art world practitioners to learn about all aspects of the production, exhibition and market of cultural artifacts.  All Master’s students also complete a 45-day internship as part of their study.

In addition, there is also a series of optional workshops to help prepare students for internship and employment opportunities. The workshops are held by art world and human resources professionals and cover topics such as the resume writing, public speaking, interviewing and networking process. These workshops are open to all students in either Master’s program or in the Certificate in Modern and Contemporary Art.


Christie’s Education, New York has been designated as a degree-granting institution by the New York State Board of Regents.  Our graduate and certificate programs are registered with the New York State Education Department.  Christie’s Education, New York is accredited by the New York State Board of Regents and the Commissioner of Education in their capacity as a nationally recognized accrediting agency.

For further details, please see relevant links below

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Financial Aid


Tuition and Fees 2016-2017

Due one month after acceptance
Tuition Deposit

Due August 10, 2016
Fall Term Tuition Payment

Library and Media Fee

Student Registration/Services Fee

Due December 5, 2016
Winter Term Tuition Payment

Due March 6, 2017
Spring Term Tuition Payment

Due August 10, 2017
Fall AY 2 Tuition Payment

*$1,400.00 per credit; total program is 40 credits


Dr. Veronique Chagnon-Burke, Academic Director

Noah Kupferman, Program Director

Dr. Marisa Kayyem, Associate Professor

Dr. Agnes Berecz, Associate Professor


Visiting Lecturers to be Announced

Students Object Handling
Studying at Christie’s Education helped me learn how to define and create value in a global art market and better positioned me to succeed in this market, which is highly dependent on inter-institutional business.
Jennifer Grossman
Assistant to the Vice President, Richard L. Feigen & Co.
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